How to Turn a DC Motor Into a Generator? Different Ways Explained

Creating electrical power on your own is a pretty marvelous thing. This is something that has been an area of interest for science enthusiasts for as long as we can remember.

However, the law of conversion says energy can never be created or destroyed. It can only change its forms.

Therefore, turning a DC motor can be counter-intuitive as it doesn’t provide enough power to do anything useful. But we still should look into details on how to turn a dc motor into a generator to satisfy our intellectual hunger.

How does a generator work?

How does a generator work

What most people get wrong about the generator is that it creates energy. As mentioned earlier, energy cannot be created or destroyed. It can only change its form.

A generator converts chemical or mechanical energy to electrical energy. Moreover, the generator is essentially an electric motor that works in reverse. It captures the power of motion and turns it into electrical energy by forcing electrons from the external source through an electrical circuit.

Can any DC motor be used as a generator?

A DC motor that has a permanent magnet can easily be used as a generator. It doesn’t matter whether it is brushed or not. However, you need to add a rectifier to get DC output.

Can We Get Free Energy with a DC Generator?

Can We Get Free Energy with a DC Generator

The answer is a big NO. You won’t be able to power quite literally anything with this generator. The objective of this article is to show how energy changes its form and how any generator works.

You will need a continuous source of power to get an output of power. According to Thermodynamics 1st law, no amount of energy output cannot be gained without input.

Things you would need to get started

Things you would need to get started

These are the essential things you would need to begin the process. Depending on where you live, all of these essentials should be available in a local store. In case you do not find it, check online retail stores.

  1. DC motor: Two working 12V DC motor is essential to make a generator. Keep in mind the DC motors have to have permanent magnets. Make sure to ask the salesperson for the permanent magnet one
  2. Glue Gun: A glue gun is used to join two things together. It would be needed to set the motors on the board. Keep in mind that your safety is your utmost priority while using it. Keep children away while you work with it.
  3. Battery: A 12V battery would be needed to power the generator. Do not buy over 12V battery because it will cause the motor to be burned for over-voltage flow.
  4. Snap Connector: A snap connector essentially connects the battery with the motors.
  5. LED Strip Light: A 12V led strip light to check if we are actually getting any power output.
  6. Wire: about 30 cm of 12V wire would be needed to connect both motors and the led strip light.
  7. Soldering Iron: To perfectly place the wire with the motor and strip light, you would need a soldering iron. It’s highly recommended to buy a bit better quality one with a little bit more cost.
  8. Plywood board: 3mm hard plywood board would be needed to set the whole machine up.
  9. Shaft:  Two pieces of the shaft connect both motors with each other with rubber

How to Turn a DC Motor into a Generator

to Turn a DC Motor Into a Generator

After ensuring all the steps above, we are ready to give a deep dive into the process of How to Turn a DC Motor Into a Generator. Do note that you might need prior experience to use a soldering iron. Otherwise, you might cause an unwanted accident.

  • Take the board and use the glue gun to attach them to the board. Make sure you attach their head to the same side. Attach the shaft with motors before you attach it to the board.
  • Connect two motors’ shafts using the rubber. Keep in mind that the rubber should be tightly connected with both shafts.
  • Place the battery in one corner and use the glue gun to set it up on the board. Make sure you have connected the snap connector to it before placing it on the board
  • On the other side of the board, you need to set up an LED strip light. Connect the LED with one motor using the 12V wire and use a soldering iron to make sure the connection is strictly placed
  • Now connect the battery’s output line with the other motor, and you will see the light turns on. Connect the motor’s wire to the battery using a soldering iron.
  • The battery’s energy is helping the motor to run, and the motor is running another motor and transferring the energy to it.

  • You can use a drill machine to run the first motor, and you will see the light turns on, causing the energy to pass through the 2nd one essentially works like a generator.

Read more on how to turn a DC motor into a generator?

How Much Electricity Can a 12V DC Motor Generate

How Much Electricity Can a 12V DC Motor Generate

A 12-volt DC motor with a maximum 1.5A capacity can generate 18W of power. Moreover, the 12v DC motor with a maximum 3A capacity can generate 36W of power. The power output changes depending on the volts of the motor being used to make the generator.

How Many Volts does a 12V DC Moto Produce?

How Many Volts does a 12V DC Moto Produce

It should give around 85% of the output of the given energy. So, the energy output should be 10-11 volts. If it’s less than that, it is not producing current voltage to power your devices. So, you might take professional help in such cases


Turn a DC Motor Into a Generator

Even though we might not use a DC generator for any essential needs like charging phones or power fans, it is still intriguing to see how energy behaves. The physics behind the whole generator helps us to get a better idea of our universe and insight into how to use energy more efficiently.

You can never actually get free energy. The process of how to turn a dc motor into a generator proves this point further.

Also Check:

1. How to Connect a Motor to a Shaft?

2. How to Test Brushless Motor with Multimeter?